Highlighting This Year’s Best Music Festivals

Highlighting This Year’s Best Music Festivals 

Posted: 11:31 am Saturday, January 14th, 2017

By Kyle Taylor

Festival season is almost upon us! The beginning of spring has almost become synonymous with the start of festival season, as the plethora of music festivals one has to choose from continues to grow year after year. For good reason, they mostly fall during the spring and summer months, meaning that you could very possibly attend a music festival every weekend from April through August. This sounds slightly impossible, however, for even the wealthiest and diehard music fans alike, so I have constructed a list of this year’s best music festival so far announced. This list will continue to be updated as more festivals announce their lineups.

Okeechobee Music Festival

okeechobee music fest lineup

The second year festival will be back at beautiful Sunshine Grove in the middle of south Florida. The music and arts festival is a 4 night camping only immersive experience. If you have been to a music festival in the past but haven’t camped, this is a bucket list experience. The diversity of genres up and down this lineup is what gets it on this list. It’s certainly not top heavy, and you might not recognize half of the lineup, but nonetheless there is something for everyone.

South by Southwest

South by Southwest 2017

One of the most unique and original festivals in the United States is SXSW in Austin, Texas. It’s a little different from your typical experience in that the artists play in individually ticketed venues throughout the city. Many of these shows pop up unannounced throughout the week, so you never know who you’ll run into at the local dive bar. They also have a portion of the festival dedicated to film and technology, so there are many unique experiences you can delve into in Austin during the month of March.


High Water Fest

High Water Fest

This festival newcomer is destined to be a success. Nestled along the river in beautiful North Charleston, this should be an Alt/ Folk Rock music fan’s dream. Curated by Charleston’s own Shovels & Rope, the Americana Folk Rock outfit invited their friends along for what should be a great weekend of music.


Shaky Knees Music Festival

Shaky Knees

What started as a very small two day festival has grown into one of the country’s premier festivals based on lineup and location. This year should be no different. The move to a larger venue in Centennial Olympic Park was fitting for the festival’s growing size and relationship to the city of Atlanta. There are numerous 97X favorites amid this lineup.


Hangout Music Festival

Hangout Music Festival

This has arguably the best lineup of the year. There are a couple festivals who have yet to announce their lineups, but regardless, Hangout Fest should please fans of almost any genre. Mumford & Sons, Twenty One Pilots, Frank Ocean, and Chance the Rapper are the biggest names in their respected genres. While some haters criticize festivals for following the trends rather than getting unique artists, you can’t argue the popularity of these artists. And to add a cherry on top, this all takes place on the beach.

Bottlerock Napa

Bottlerock Napa

This is looking like it could be Foo Fighters only festival appearance of the year. Add Tom Petty and Maroon 5, and that should be good enough to start looking at flights.

Boston Calling

boston calling

The creators of Boston Calling dropped a bomb on the festival scene when they announced this stacked lineup. What used to be a two weekend festival spread across May and September, has possibly condensed it to this weekend only (?) and moved across town to a much larger and open aired venue at Harvard.


Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival


This year’s lineup wasn’t jaw dropping. One can’t argue against U2, Red Hot Chili Peppers, The Weeknd, or Chance the Rapper as headliners, but 3 of those 4 have massive tours in which Bonnaroo is just another date. They didn’t reach for a McCartney or Billy Joel or unforeseen reunion this year, and that’s what makes this year’s lineup weaker than it should be. However, one can’t compete with the depth of Bonnaroo or the unique camping experience, and thus it will always be one of the premier music festivals in the world until.

Governors Ball Music Festival

Governors Ball

The ever evolving Governors Ball Music Festival has thrived the intensity of New York City and survived the threat of corporate pressures. The small team that runs Governors Ball has transformed it into a nationally recognized fest featuring solid lineups each year despite recent pressure from corporate run competitors. No Kanye this year, even though he didn’t get a chance to perform, but Chance will do.

Forecastle Festival

forecastle festival

The Louisville based festival is one not to be overlooked. While it’s smaller in scale compared to the big festivals, its lineup is not to be out done. There are some solid acts up and down this lineup which could warrant a trip to Louisville.

Bunbury Music Festival

Bunbury Music Fesitval- Muse, the 1975, Thirty Seconds to Mars, The Shins

This Cincinnati festival has provided some very impressive lineups over the past couple of years.  Last year featured The Killers while 2015 saw one of our favorites, Twenty One Pilots, make an appearance. This year is no different! Muse, G Eazy, The 1975, Thirty Seconds To Mars, Death Cab For Cutie, and The Shins highlight a very solid lineup.

Other festivals to keep an eye out for lineup announcements….


Grant Park Chicago during the summer. Say no more. This festival is always a blast no matter what you  think of the lineup.

Sloss Music & Arts Festival

This Birmingham, Alabama festival could have one of the coolest settings. The relatively small festival takes place is an abandoned industrial park, where festival producers use empty warehouses instead of makeshift tents to cover the stages.

Music Midtown

The two day Atlanta based festival went all out last year, delighting music fans with the likes of Twenty One Pilots, The Killers, and the hottest names in alt rock like Grouplove and Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats.

Outside Lands

A summer music festival in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park just sounds cool. Add a great lineup and I’m there.

Sasquatch! Music Festival

This is probably the most beautiful festival in the world. Taking place in The Gorge, Washington over Memorial Day Weekend, you’ll be overwhelmed by the natural beauty of it all, nonetheless the music. Sure it’s in the middle of nowhere and hard to get to, but you’ll probably appreciate it once you go.

Austin City Limits

Brought to you by the same people that put on Lollapalooza (C3 Productions), this is sure to be a good time. Austin couldn’t be the more perfect setting for a music festival. Keep Austin weird, right?

New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Fest

One of the longest running festivals in the country is slightly different than most others. Don’t expect an all millennial crowd. With the likes of Jimmy Buffett, Neil Diamond, Snoop Dog, Steely Dan, and Red Hot Chili Peppers on the same bill expect to see an eclectic crowd. Consider inviting your dad to this one.

Voodoo Music & Arts Festival

New Orleans? Halloween weekend? Yes, please.



  1. […] of an imminent record are her festival gigs booked this summer. As of now, you can catch her at Bonnaroo, Governors Ball, and Coachella among a few others. It’s quite uncommon for an artist to snag […]